Human Exceptionalism

NYT Bias and Missouri Cloning

Well, it didn’t work out as the pro-cloners wanted. Missouri opponents of human cloning didn’t just roll over when Amendment 2 passed through one of the most deceptive campaigns I have ever seen, abetted by a totally biased and in the tank media. And, as I have written here previously, the amendment overreached by requiring funding of embryonic stem cell research if the state funded other forms of research. As a consequence, the universities in MO lost money for new life science buildings and projects.

Now, the NYT–second only to the Kansas City Star in bias, weighs in with a story bemoaning the lack of difference that the passage of Amendment 2 made. It is the ordinary fare you see in the in biased reporting about the cloning/ESCR MSM. But I wish to call attention to two points:

1. Embryonic stem cell research was legal in MO before Amendment 2. And no one has introduced any bill of which I am aware to make it illegal in MO. If the Stowers Institute wished to conduct ESCR before Amendment 2, it could have done so until the cows came home without fear or worry about the research later being outlawed.

2. Thanks to Amendment 2, human cloning, somatic cell nuclear transfer, is a constitutional right in MO. This is not the same thing as ESCR. As I have been forced to point out constantly because stories like this one won’t, SCNT creates an embryo, one potential use for which is ESCR. Hence, the research Stowers wishes to do is not only ESCR, but creating embryos through cloning for the purpose of destroying them in ESCR. This is where the huge controversy lies, a point the media, as here, generally describes thusly:

Within hours of the vote, opponents said they would fight on, focusing their attention narrowly on one element of the research, known as therapeutic cloning or somatic cell nuclear transfer, in which the nucleus of a mature cell is transplanted into an egg cell, which would then produce stem cells.

The debate has come down to a fight over what constitutes “cloning.”

Supporters of the amendment say they banned human cloning, which they defined in the amendment as an act that could result in a woman’s pregnancy and the creation of a human fetus inside a woman’s uterus. Opponents say the replication of cells, regardless of implantation in the uterus, amounts to cloning.

First, yet again, SCNT creates an embryo, not stem cells. Second, the definition of cloning was junk biology as defined in Amendment 2. The answer to this dispute about whether SCNT is or is not cloning has a scientific answer which would have been easy to learn with a few phone calls. But that would have proven the opponents right, so that reporting was never done. The Times likes to think of itself as the paper of record. It is actually the paper of bias.

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